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How many meals a day is good to stay healthy and fit

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#11 hat0112

  • Sr. Member
  • 1,219 posts

    Posted 18 March 2010 - 10:51 AM

    I think everyone has a different approach to how to lose weight. Obviously you will have to go through a trial and error period until you figure out what is best for you. I think there are a few key things that will help put you in the right direction.

    1)Try and shoot for 5 meals a day, with a minimum of 3. Eating every 3 to 4 hours will keep your metabolism up.
    2)Drink water. Many people don’t drink enough water and end up eating when they really are thirsty. I would try and shoot for 6-8 glasses a day, more if you can.
    3)At least 5 servings of fruit and veggies. They help fill you up for less and they are loaded with vitamins and minerals your body needs.
    4)Eat protein and CARBS. I hate it when people say no carbs. Carbs have the most servings a day on the food pyramid for a reason. It is unrealistic that you will never eat carbs for the rest of your life and once you start eating them again the weight will come back. Your body needs a ton of energy a day to function and the main source is carbs followed by protein. I’m not saying to pig out on carbs, just include them in your diet but make sure they are not white. Only whole wheat pasta, brown rice, whole wheat bread, and other forms of grains.
    5)Try and workout whenever you can and try and do other activities other than the treadmill. Even someone who is in love with the treadmill will get sick of it if it’s the only thing they do. Try and get a workout video or see if your cable provider offers free ones.
    6)Don’t beat yourself up if you trail off your plan. No one is 100% perfect. There is always another meal to get you back on track.

    Good luck!
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    #12 Svnoyi

    • Newbie
    • 27 posts

      Posted 02 April 2010 - 10:43 PM

      Just want to add to some of the things that have been said.

      1. On fruit and veggies: check out Fruits & Veggies Matter: Home: Eat a Colorful Variety of Fruits and Vegetables Every Day for Better Health | CDC
      I suggest this because there are some very important things to note about fruit and vegetable consumption. There is an estimator on there that will suggest how much of each you should have per day.
      As an example, I'm 22, female and do more than 60 minutes of exercise a day. They recommend three cups of veggies and two of fruit. Cups are easier to measure than servings, which are a relative and debatable size. It's a newer thought process on the "five servings a day" - and yes, you should have more veggies than fruit due to the sugar content in fruit. Be honest about your lifestyle to make sure you don't consume more calories than you should.

      2. On carbs: super, super, super important. Carbs should be about 40% of your diet. Very important, however, is that they come from good sources. Oatmeal, whole wheat cereals and breads, whole wheat pasta and brown rice are your best sources of healthy carbs. It might be hard to switch at first (like if you're used to white bread, which is sweeter than wheat), but once you do, you'll feel so much healthier. (Keep in mind you'll get carbs from most things you eat as well, so make an effort to steer toward these healthy sources and let fruits and veggies give you the other sugars you need.)

      3. Water: to calculate how much water you need to stay hydrated, take your body weight, cut it in half, and change pounds to ounces. (So if you're 150 pounds, it would be 75 ounces.) This is how much you should be drinking everyday at an absolute minimum to stay hydrated. If you exercise, you'll need more.

      4. Processed foods: it's hard, but try to cut them down. I'm not saying they're all completely evil and you shouldn't eat them, but you should try to consume most of your calories in unprocessed foods.

      And some indivudal food tips:
      -Cereal/Oatmeal: try to stick to real whole wheat, like Post Shredded Wheat (not honey nut or frosted), or unflavored "old-fashioned" oats. If you're like me and this tastes absolutely godawful to you, try cutting up a banana and adding a tablespoon of honey to it. Helps knock off some of your fruits for the day and honey is very good for you.
      -If you eat yogurt, look for organic. Stonyfield is an example, and available at Publix. The problem with yogurts like Yoplait is the hideous amount of fake sweeteners and bad sugar (high fructose corn syrup) they use. Organic yogurt uses real milled sugar and is much healthier. You might find it's thicker at first, but the taste is still great.
      -If you're not vegan, try eggs. Studies show people who eat eggs five times a week have smaller waistlines and lower cholesterol than those who don't. (If you eat more than one, make one a whole egg and then any others only whites, like one whole egg and two whites.) You can add some veggies to it, or spice to give it some taste. (Try to stay away from cheese, which add a lot of calories.)
      -Use extra virgin olive oil whenever possible. (I use it in the pan for my eggs!

      As for how much you should eat, it's been said. 5 - 6 meals is ideal. Keep in mind, though, that this means portions should be small - about 400 - 450 calories a meal. If you can't fit in that many, three is the minimum and NEVER SKIP BREAKFAST!

      Hope this helps!

      #13 pfeiffla

      • Jr. Member
      • 155 posts

        Posted 26 October 2011 - 07:05 PM

        I've always heard 5- 3 meals and 2 snacks, with your biggest meal being the first of the day and tapering down!

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